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USA Leadership Patterns: From the 19th to the 21st centuries

During the past three years the USA’s military development and activities have come to the forefront of the country’s international image and reputation, and political interests. In turn, these have become important election issues, not just in the USA but in other countries that have taken a stance in relation to the USA's 'war on terror', whether supportive or in disagreement.

Since December 2003 the USA has moved into a new phase in relation to its Mars. Amongst other things, Mars symbolises the military and the desire to lead. It relates to a nation's survival instincts and its fears of being attacked (the moons that orbit Mars are called Phobos and Deimos, which translate as fear and panic) as well as its capacity to go on the offensive and to impose unequal relationships on others.

From the end of 2003 Pluto has moved into an opposing position to the USA's Mars. This dynamic will remain until the end of 2005. Perhaps the most significant aspect that Mars makes in the USA's birth chart is a square to Neptune. Time and again this aspect has been active when the USA has attacked other people, or has been drawn into conflict by being on the receiving end of other people's aggression. The diagram below shows this aspect and the transit of Pluto:

Pluto transit to the USA's Mars-Neptune: 2003 to 2005

This transit is absolutely pivotal in the USA's development, because it has never before happened in the USA's history, and won't happen again for nearly 250 years.

Whilst the USA, and perhaps also the world in general, looks back to the terrorist attacks in the USA of September 2001 as a major defining event, the years from 2003 to 2005 may be seen in future as still more decisive. It’s almost as if the world as a whole since 2001 has been anticipating the USA’s current transit of Pluto to Mars, and the past three years of constellating the issues around Mars has prepared the way for the changes to come.

Looking at the past to see present themes

If we look at what developed when Pluto last made a major aspect to the USA's Mars we can get an idea of what the current transit might be about. Pluto has never opposed the USA's Mars before, but it has made a conjunction to it.

The first - and so far, the only - time Pluto conjoined the USA's Mars was in 1903, lasting until 1908. This was the time of President Roosevelt, the 'big stick' president who thought that might was good, if not necessarily right. He was particularly proud of the USA's naval forces, reflecting the Mars-Neptune square aspect - Neptune symbolises the oceans and Mars is force and power.

In 1904 the USA's long and costly involvement with the Panama canal was officially confirmed with the ratification by the Senate of a Treaty between the USA and newly independent Panama. Panama had just split from Colombia, thanks to USA naval intervention; where money failed to obtain land for the USA, military intervention succeeded. The Panama canal was the first human-made division of two continents.

This graph shows the intensity of the USA's Pluto transits between 1900 and 1910. As you can see, there is a clear highlighting of late 1903 through to 1908, with Pluto transits 300% more present and intense than the statistical average:

USA Pluto Transits: 1900 to 1910

In December 1904 Roosevelt extended the Monroe Doctrine (dating from December 1823, this was a policy of telling the European nations to keep out of the Americas or face war with the USA) in what is known as the Roosevelt Corollary. This policy was a statement by 'big stick' Roosevelt that from now on the USA would police the entire western hemisphere. It was a warning to the European nations not to pursue imperialist ambitions in the Americas, and it declared Latin America and the Caribbean as within the USA's 'sphere of influence'. In reality it meant that the USA would from then on replace the imperial ventures by European nations in the Americas with imperial ventures of its own.

These examples show how the USA has sought to assert itself (Mars) in the past when this area of the USA's chart was active. We can therefore expect similar themes to become active again in the USA between 2003 and 2005. This is a time when the USA's desire for leadership and dominance is on the rise and when it will want to divide and conquer, as it did with Panama and Latin America, but Pluto transits to Mars are periods when we are challenged to let go of our need to control, to fight, to win, to be in charge, to be first and best, to be both at the front and at the top, to be in unequal 'I win, you lose' relationships.

November 2004's election

The Presidential election this year is strongly coloured by this transit. George Bush has been a 'big stick' President, determined to protect the USA's 'spheres of influence' around the world using military force, and re-asserting the USA's claims to leadership and even dominance as justification for his actions.

At the time of writing, John Kerry is the Democratic contender for the coming election. He is a former military man who has faced battles in his personal life and won them. But does he have the courage to lead the USA in a new direction? To break with the past and let go of the desire to dominate?

In light of the USA's Pluto transit, both Bush and Kerry's positions in relation to the USA's leadership and aggression are pivotal to their success or failure as leaders. The people of the USA are undergoing a review of their collective Mars-Neptune aspect, and how a leader taps into this change process is important to the outcome of the transit towards the end of 2005.

Key dates 2003 to 2005

In the unfoldment of this change process there are key dates that can be identified as turning points. These can manifest on sociological, psychological, cultural, political, behavioural, financial, military, or event-based levels. The transit can be viewed in three phases, like three acts of a play:

Phase 1 of the transit:
Beginning:    28th December 2003
Peak I:         27th January 2004
Peak II:        23rd May 2004
End:            1st July 2004
Within phase 1, March, August and September are potentially very chaotic and disorienting months, with mid-September standing out particularly strongly.

Phase 2 of the transit:
Beginning:    26th October 2004
Peak III:       26th November 2004
End:            22nd December 2004
NB Voting in the presidential election is due to start on 2nd November 2004 just as this phase is building to a peak
December is another stand-out time in this phase. In 2005, February, March and April are likely to be when the change process intensifies.

Phase 3 of the transit:
Beginning:    15th July 2005
Peak IV:       2nd September 2005
End:            18th October 2005
August/September 2005 is again a potentially chaotic, unsettled, disorienting time. December 2005 is a time for summing up and closing the chapter on this two-year period, although some of these issues will continue in a less intense way until around 2010.

The graph below shows the intensity of the USA's Pluto transits for the years 2000 to 2010. It clearly shows the heightened period from the end of 2003 to the end of 2005 where Pluto transits are 400% greater than the statistical average, as well as a smaller peak that is 200% above average around September and October 2001, the time of the terrorist attacks and the start of the Afghanistan war:

USA Pluto Transits: 2000 to 2010

Related article:
Where Next for the USA? Neptune's transit of the USA's Mars from 2006 to 2009. Click here to read it.

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